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The 2010 Glen Workshop In Santa Fe, NM

The Gospel According to St. Matthew
Movie Poster for Carl Theodor Dreyer's Ordet
Directed by
Produced by Alfredo Bini
Written by Pier Paolo Pasolini
Music by Luis Enríquez Bacalov
Cinematography by Tonino Delli Colli
Editing by Nino Baragli
Release Date 1964
Running Time 137 min.
Language Italian
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The Gospel According to St. Matthew

(Il vangelo secondo Matteo)

Some of the most intriguing artistic tributes to faith and religion come from nonbelievers. A Man For All Seasons, the great drama of the life and martyrdom of St. Thomas More, was written for the stage and screen by the non-Christian Robert Bolt. The story of The Song of Bernadette, the Marian visionary of Lourdes, was first written as a historical novel by a Jewish author, Franz Werfel. And Mark Twain’s favorite work among all his books was his Joan of Arc.

Pier Paolo Pasolini was an atheist, indeed a Marxist, and The Gospel According to Matthew is routinely interpreted as a proto-Marxist allegory. Yet Pasolini was perhaps first of all a poet, and the concepts of the sacred and the divine, far from repelling him as so much religious superstition, held for him a powerful appeal. In 1962 he came to Assisi in response to Pope John XXIII’s call for dialogue with non-Christian artists. While there, he read through a book of the Gospels “from beginning to end, like a novel,” later proclaiming the story of Jesus “the most exalting thing one can read.”

- Steven D. Greydanus

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